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Holiday Reunion: Silicon Valley Hi-Tech Portal Brings Together Puerto Rican Family

NBCUniversal, Inc.

It may look like a random shipping container in the middle of Silicon Valley, but inside is a portal.

A Shared Studios portal sits in the middle of the Juniper Networks corporate headquarters. (Dec. 13, 2019)

A portal with a large screen that takes over an entire wall, a couple of lights on the side and maybe a chair or two. The gold-colored container was created by Shared Studios to "create meaningful human connections between people separated by distance and difference." To connect people the portal is equipped with audiovisual technology to link you with any of the 50 Shared Studios around the globe. For the next year, Juniper Networks will host Shared Studios at their Sunnyvale corporate headquarters to connect, engage and bring people together through technology.

“It is a very ingenious way of communicating with other people," said Nadia Colon, project manager at Juniper Networks. "This is really a different experience."

[L-R] Nadia Colon shares a holiday dinner with her sister, brother and mother in a Shared Studio at Juniper Networks in Sunnyvale, California. (Dec. 13, 2019)

For Colon, the portal was an opportunity to connect with her family in Puerto Rico without the restrictions of a phone call or a video chat. The last time she saw her family was about two years, so to celebrate the holidays they coordinated on their favorite Puerto Rican dishes and prepared to have a high-tech holiday dinner.

“This experience was very special, it allowed me to connect with them in a different way that I never connected with them before," said Colon. "Families that are separated would really benefit from this.” 

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